Friday, February 27, 2009
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
CANNES in a VAN - The Perfect Vehicle for Independent Film
The wheels are turning once again!
While our 2009 site currently has the decorators in and should be up and running soon, we're calling for submissions for the Cannes in a Van 2009 trip to the Cote d'Azur. True to form of the last 2 years showcasing independent film right on the Croisette from our humble yellow Ford Transit, against the odds (and the 'crunch'), we're doing it again... and we'd love you to join us.
SCREEN YOUR FILMS in CANNES & be part of The Smallest Mobile Film Festival in the World.
If you are a filmmaker, film collective or production company who wants to screen your film or selection at CANNES in a VAN, we want to hear from you.
This year, as well as cramming in as many shorts as we can in the space of 10 days, we want to 'champion' a select bunch of films - with repeat screenings, web presence and promotion. We aim to give them the unique international exposure only Cannes in a Van can! Oh, and it's free.
All you need to do is download the submission form and send it with your film to the address on the form. You can find the submission form at:
There's not a lot to it really... We screen your films, to a captive, film-loving audience at the Cannes Film Festival, from a van. We do it because we love film... and filmmakers. We've had some great support in the last two years from various sponsors (check out the 2008 site for links) as well as some generous filmmakers, which enable us to make the trip.
It's in the spirit of guerilla cinema and we need as much word-of-mouth support as we can get, including forwarding the site on to friends, journalists, filmmakers, media... sponsorship from small companies and any ideas, feedback or help you might be able to offer. We can offer links and advertising in return for sponsorship and would love to support whoever we can.
Last year we went green too, converting the van to run on vegetable oil (courtesy of Bloomingfutures.com). It's just not so good in the cold!
We're looking for people to lend a hand while we're in Cannes, so if you're going to be at the festival and want to get involved in something that's promoting independent film in it's purest form, drop us a line.
THANKS FOR LISTENING and don't forget to send in your films!
PLEASE SUPPORT US IN ANY WAY YOU CANNES!
Email us at:
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Monday, February 23, 2009
Saturday, February 21, 2009
- All submitted films must be at least 70 minutes long.
- Cost of completed film, including post, must be less than $20 million.(For verification purposes, all films with total budgets exceeding $15 million or films with budgets under $500,000 applying for the Cassavetes Award are required to submit the top sheets from the film's Final Cost Report.)
- Eligible films must have either: a) Been shown at least one week in a commercial theater between January 1 and December 31, 2008; or b) Been shown in 2008 at one of the following six film festivals: The Los Angeles Film Festival, New Directors/New Films, New York, Sundance, Telluride, or Toronto. Films that have or will have domestic theatrical distribution should be submitted the year of their theatrical run.
Original, provocative subject matter
Economy of means (with particular attention paid to total production cost and individual compensation)
Percentage of financing from independent sources
Except for the category of Best Documentary and Best Foreign Film, all nominations go to American films, defined as either:
Having at least one U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident credited in two or more of the following categories of responsibility: writer, director, producer; OR
The film is set in the United States and fully financed by a company whose principal office is in the U.S.
Friday, February 20, 2009
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Gigantic Releasing has launched a site that allows you to stream the premiere of a first-run indie film online both in high-res and ad-free. The price is $2.99 to viewers.
They are offering ten of my readers free passes for one of their films. If you are interested, email me and I will put you in touch with them for the pass so you can check out the film.
Go to Gigantic Digital and see what they're all about.
For you filmmakers who may be interested in approaching them about a release of your film through this service, here's the scoop: They are open to a variety of different agreements with filmmakers based on the material. For instance, they can do a traditional acquisition for all rights over an extended period (7-10 years) or they can do an exclusive digital-only release over a brief period of time (3 months) or anything in-between. Any digital-only deal is structured as a 50-50 split after limited, agreed upon expenses which, in round numbers, results in a dollar to the producer for every ticket purchased.
I am not endorsing their service as I haven't used it (yet) but it sounds like a pretty cool thing to consider. If any of you use them for a release, let me know and we can highlight your experience.
Monday, February 9, 2009
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Friday, February 6, 2009
Thursday, February 5, 2009
I can't think of one organization that strongly focuses on the development of indie producers. Film school producing programs are just the beginning of training. And most indie producers don't attend film school anyway. You must already have films distributed in order to join the Producers Guild as a producer. By then you have already typically made a few crappy ones that never got distributed. IFP and Film Independent and Sundance try to offer help but they also heavily service directors and writers. And much of the best resources are given in tiny labs that are very hard to get into.
I think we need an organization specifically for producers -- that will be the most effective.
Most of the interviews in film magazines are with writers and directors. I know more about the writers and directors of indie films than producers. That needs to change. More publicity and knowledge of what a producer does will help. Maybe those less experienced won't jump in so quickly if they really understand how big a job it is.
I think that if we start an organization that is helmed or guided by successful producers that really gives back to the next generation of producers then we are on to something that can help indie films get better. Teach indie producers how to develop strong films and be a strong creative partner to the director. Help them understand the importance of a strong cast. Distributors have said they want projects with name actors. How do indie producers make this happen? They need help. Bigger producers could help make inroads with the agents so they are more open to having their clients in smaller films. Give indie producers resources that really help them secure distribution.
You help to teach and build the skills of indie producers and I guarantee there will be significant change in the quality of films being made. They will develop projects longer. Staff it right and cast it well, etc. We lament the loss of billions of dollars each year on indie films. Who is gathering this money and using it? Producers! Let's get us trained and organized and perhaps these losses will diminish. I'm ready to do what it takes to fix the situation. This is my livelihood. If I don't help fix it, who will?
If there were an organization providing more significant training and support from the top at the producer level, we would see a huge difference in the quality of films being made. I know my producer colleagues and I could use more support and the problem is that we haven't been able to find this "ongoing" support. We lean on each other and we join all the usual associations that do exist, but we still struggle finding the mentoring that we really want and need.
Sure, most of us have worked with amazing producers in the past who try to be approachable but it's not an effective system. These amazing producers are extremely busy and have their own projects to worry about. I think these producers would be more available if they were working within an established system of giving back. I personally find it much easier to give back through an established means rather than random email and phone requests that have a high chance of getting lost in the shuffle. In addition, an established system would allow mentoring from multiple sources, which benefits everyone.
I am a case study in what is broken in our system. I work extremely hard and have the best of intentions for making entertaining films that appeal to a wide audience. I want my investors to make their money back, and I believe I am making the right decisions but if I had a system to lean on a bit more, I know I would increase the odds of my films being a success. And if producers like me have a hard time building a proper support system, how do those just starting out have a chance? It's a real dilemma.
We need a system that offers producers a means for receiving guidance and training, and in turn, allows those producers who have "made it" to give back in a significant way. By the time a producer has made a name for him or herself, he or she has usually already made a few films that have lost money. I am sure this "learning" period is where we are seeing the greatest loss in the billions of dollars of investment money. We catch producers at this phase in their careers and we provide a foundation for a thriving independent film industry.
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
We believe everyone has something to offer in the collaborative art of filmmmaking. The tour kicks off March 27, 2009. Check out our site at www.filmblazer.com.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Monday, February 2, 2009
I'm off to Jury Duty today. Lots o' fun for me today. Maybe I'll see Gene Hackman there. If only it were the movies! A friend did say he hung out with Eva Longoria when he reported last. When I say hung out, he sat next to her. So who knows? Maybe I'll hang with a celebrity who is reporting too. I'll keep you posted on it.
Following is more information about the application:
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- Over 1500 questions to choose from with points for each correct answer
- 5 Film Making Subject Categories: Editing, Directing, ScriptWriting, Acting and Cinematography
- Each question has a detailed web page links for detailed informaton
- Users can submit a question as well!
- Active Leaderboard with a list of the top points scorers